Daibutsu, Kamakura

Daibutsu, Kamakura
Daibutsu in Kamakura, June 2010. There were thousands of school kids visiting that day. It was still great fun.

Friday, December 18, 2009

iPhone blowing up worldwide, big in Japan after all

iPhone blowing up worldwide, big in Japan after all: "iPhone blowing up worldwide, big in Japan after all"

It's about time. My feeling is that the old "flip phone" with the small screen and no keyboard is so outdated. I was wondering why so many people in Japan are still using what I feel are archaic flip phones. While in the United States and elsewhere, most people have moved away from those phone and to devices such as the iPhone and the Android with bigger screens and a functional keyboard. I understand the Japanese phones are pretty advanced with many features such as built in payment features, train transit passes, and sophisticated cameras. But the old flip phone style with the small screen and no keyboard seems so old.


  1. My list of possible reasons is:

    -The old flip phone is much easier to type in Japanese with.

    -The iPhone here is more expensive than other phones.

    -Japanese aren't as tech savvy as they seem.

    I want to get one, but the typing problem has me hesitating.

  2. Interesting that the flip phone is easier to type Japanese. Why is that?

  3. My japanese friends all love my iphone. You have both phone and keyboard style Japanese keyboards.

    I think the big thing is the price. There is no AT&T to have a plan with a cheap phone so the starting iphone is $700.

    Typing isn't a problem.

    resistance is futile!

  4. $700? That's insane. I wouldn't buy a phone for that either.

  5. Call me old-fashioned, but I like my flip-phone.

  6. When I tried typing on the memo pad at Yamada Denki I had a hard time - probably since I don't know how to use it, and I frequently hit the wrong buttons on my current flip phone.

    Is there a different program with bigger buttons for typing? An app maybe?

    And by the way, the $700 is spread out over two years, so you pay monthly. My coworkers are paying about 7,000 yen a month.

  7. One nice thing about the flip phones is the user facing camera, so video calls are possible.

    The keypad is bigger when the phone is sideways. But like anything, it was a pain to get used to. After practicing a bit it's really no problem. (I agree, not having a physical key to touch is a little strange at first.)

  8. I see your point about the video calls. The biggest thing to me is the screen size. I like the bigger screens on todays smartphones like the iPhone.

  9. I like the flip-phones in theory. In terms of shape and style alone, I don't think they're old or outdated or nostalgic at all, but still exciting and fun.

    But in terms of functionality, I love my iPhone, and was actually thinking with sadness about how I won't be able to use it if/when I go to Japan this coming summer.

    Any and all of the functions Japanese love about their phones can be incorporated into a smartphone. Even the notch for keitai straps to be attached, if Apple got off their ass and provided that.

    I do kind of miss the smaller, sleeker size of the flipphones, the wider range of styles and shapes and colors, and something about the feel and style of it. But, again, for functionality, I adore my iPhone. And I type in Japanese with it and everything, no problem.

  10. I am surprised Apple did not put a place to put a keitai strap for the iPhones sold in Japan. In spite of that, they seem to be catching on.